The Politics of Rightness: Social Justice among Russia's Christian Communities

Melissa L. Caldwell, University of California, Santa Cruz


My purpose in this paper is to explore interfaith collaboration among Russia's Christian denominations as congregations work together in pursuit of social welfare and social justice goals. As I will describe more fully below, I am concerned with the ways in which Orthodox, Catholic, and mainline Protestant denominations creatively move beyond their theological and historical differences to forge common practices of social action. These common practices of social action invite us to reconsider not only the nature and place of moral systems in a pluralistic Russian religious society, but also the dimensions of that religious pluralism itself. As will become apparent, these interfaith collaborations produce a form of morality that requires the proper enactment of both praxis and ritual. 

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